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To achieve infra growth & housing for all, industry demands more relief

Written By kom nampultig on Minggu, 01 Maret 2015 | 22.10

NEW DELHI: The industry players and government bodies believe that to boost infrastructure and achieve housing for all by 2022, the finance minister should further do some exercise to review the construction sector.

Noida, Greater Noida and Yamuna Expressway Authorities chairman Rama Raman said the budget is visionary and people will realize the impact of these tough decisions in the long run. Raman however maintained that to achieve infrastructure growth and to complete ambitious project like housing for all, there is need to initiate some more steps to review the sector.

P Sahel is the Vice Chairman of the Lotus Greens said decisions taken by finance minister Arun Jaitley in the Union Budget are in view of achieving the long-term vision that has been articulated through a range of initiatives, such as Infrastructure development, Housing for All, DMIC, boosting real estate investments through REITs and the formation of an Expert committee for reviewing the multiple clearances for projects. However the proposal of increasing the service tax from 12.36 % to 14%, perhaps will lead to high construction cost due to increase in material & end-product cost. "The declaration to introduce 'Benami' Property Transaction Bill could further ensure more transparency thereby creating a more professional environment in the sector. As a double digit GDP growth has been estimated by the government in the long run, this will create a positive business sphere for overall sector. We would have also liked to see some enterprising incentives for Sustainable Development in real estate," Sahel said.

"Although the finance minister in his Budget Speech has announced construction of 2 crore houses in rural India and 4 crore houses in urban areas, no concession either for home buyers or for the developers has been given in the Budget. When we are talking about housing for all by 2022 and boosting infrastructure, then initiatives should be taken to encourage the sector," Supertech? ?chairman RK Arora?? said.

"Ambitious Housing for All by 2022 project is a challenge and this mission can be carried forward by accelerating reforms through time bound approval processes, developing infrastructure, new satellite towns and providing loans at lower rate of interest to lower income groups. Attracting private participation is expected by giving infrastructure status to housing and these reform initiatives. However the increase in service tax on construction and excise duty on inputs apart from cess on petrol and diesel coupled with increase input cost and create further burden on real estate sector at a time of sluggish demand," said SS Bhasin, MD Bhasin group.

"Budget 2015 was balanced and has shown a roadmap for the infrastructure with an investment of Rs 70,000 crore which will certainly give a boost to ancillary industries such as real estate. The host of announcements such as allotting Rs.22,000 crores for housing development and Regulatory reform law for infrastructure development towards the development of a single window clearance are expected to change the general sentiment from being negative and neutral to being more positive. However, there were no announcements to grant an industry status to the real estate sector, which would have enabled the sector to raise debt from financial institutions and foreign institutional investors (FIIs) at a much lower rate thus partly relieving the liquidity crunch crisis and also passing on the lower costs to the end users," RK Panpalia, MD, Wave Infratech.

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3 killed as man sets house on fire

NEW DELHI: Three people, including an infant, were killed and 11 others were seriously injured when a man set fire to a three-storey apartment in Palam Vihar on Saturday morning. As it turned out, the killer wanted to bump off his wife over a domestic dispute, but ended up destroying seven families living there.

The incident took place in Shad Nagar, Palam Vihar. Anil Kumar (52), a truck driver, has been arrested. His family stayed on the ground floor. Kumar had moved out himself since the quarrel. Firefighters said 12 people were rescued. Three fire tenders controlled the blaze in an hour.

Fire department officials said the fire broke out at Ahlawat Apartments around 3am. Ironically, it was Kumar's daughter Simran who first noticed the blaze. She ran to the first floor and alerted two families living there. She saved three lives, including an elderly woman's, before helping her mother, Mamata, out of the building. But her grandmother Kailash Rani got left behind.

One of the residents, an Air Force officer, A N Verma, said he managed to jump onto the balcony of an adjacent house. "My son helped me. We then raised an alarm to alert others," he said.

But second floor resident Jagdeep Kumar (32) was not so lucky. He took his one-year-old son, Aksh, and tried to go down the stairs. Both were asphyxiated. His wife, Indu (30), looked for him but fell unconscious. She has been admitted to LNJP Hospital with 80% burns. Indu, an engineer, worked in Bangalore but moved here a year ago to be near her parents.

"A team under the supervision of ACP (Dabri) M Harsha Vardhan was formed," DCP southwest Suman Goyal said. CCTV footage from a neighbouring building showed Kumar starting the fire. He has confessed.

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MHA says no to CM’s choice for chief secretary

NEW DELHI: The Union home ministry has ruled out Arvind Kejriwal's choice for Delhi chief secretary, IAS officer Ramesh Negi, and presented him with panel of three seniormost AGMUT cadre officers to choose from. In fact, going the extra mile to avert any Centre-state confrontation over the issue, the ministry has also given Kejriwal the choice of picking an officer from outside the panel, provided he is in the Rs 80,000 per month pay-scale.

Negi, who is currently chief secretary of Arunachal Pradesh, does not fall in the apex Rs 80,000 payscale.

"We have conveyed our regrets on considering Negi for the chief secretary's post. We are unable to accommodate him since the said officer is not only way too junior, with nearly 12 senior AGMUT ranked ahead of him, but, importantly, his pay scale is below grade of Rs 80,000 per month," a senior ministry functionary pointed out.

The official added that the home ministry, keen not to foist its own choice on the Kejriwal government, has given him the leeway to pick his chief secretary from among nearly one dozen eligible AGMUT cadre officers, "as long as they are in the Rs 80,000 payscale".

Home ministry sources said it was in touch with the Delhi government to resolve the chief secretary issue amicably. "There are indications that the Kejrwal regime appreciates our limitations and will not make the chief secretary's appointment a sticking point," claimed a ministry official.

However, when contacted by TOI, senior functionaries of the Delhi government continued to be non-committal on Kejriwal easing his stand on Negi. It is learnt that the state will take a call on the matter on Monday, the first working day after the retirement of former chief secretary D M Spolia on February 27. If the government does not take a stand by then, it will have to settle for an acting chief secretary.

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AAP cold war hots up: Yadav may lose PAC role

NEW DELHI: Differences within the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) came to the fore again on Saturday amid reports that chief spokesperson Yogendra Yadav would be dropped from the all-important political affairs committee (PAC).

Sources said many AAP leaders were unhappy with Yadav's style of functioning and differed over future plans for the party. There were heated arguments during the national executive meeting on February 26 after which it was decided to reconstitute the PAC.

When asked about the reported move to shunt him out, Yadav said, "All this is speculation. We are above all this... we have a greater purpose to serve.'' An AAP spokesperson too denied any move to turf out Yadav, saying, "There is no redistribution of work as of now.''

Trouble began when Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and deputy CM Manish Sisodia skipped the national executive meeting citing a series of engagements. Sources said Kejriwal was not happy with Yadav and had indicated that he would like to resign as national convener to concentrate on Delhi. Some political affairs committee members, however, met Kejriwal at night with a resolution that he continue in his position as national convener.

The basic point of contention between Yadav and the Kejriwal camp has been on the way forward. While Yadav has been of the view that the party can spread its wings to other states, Kejriwal and others have been vocal about restricting themselves to Delhi to consolidate the strong hold of the party. Another senior member Prashant Bhushan raised concern over inadequate scrutiny of candidates and emphasized the importance of monitoring the MLA funds.

The national executive meeting was called again the next day, with only permanent members with voting rights called in for a closed-door consultation. Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yadav were not present in that meeting.

The remaining AAP members are reported to have voted in favour of reconstituting the PAC and gave Kejriwal the authority to reorganize it.

Fissures between Yadav and Kejriwal had come up after the Lok Sabha polls last year when the former said in a letter that there was a "personality cult'' building around Kejriwal.

In a rebuttal, Sisodia had blamed Yadav for the decision to contest elections across the country and spreading themselves too thin.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Manish Sisodia,Arvind Kejriwal

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17 additional trains in Delhi Metro from Monday

NEW DELHI: The induction of 17 trains into the services of Delhi Metro from Monday may offer the commuters a slight respite from the constant jostling for space, especially during the peak hours in the evening.

The addition of the trains, which will be undertaking 104 extra trips during off peak (11AM - 4.30PM) and evening peak hours (4.30PM - 8.30PM) on all lines except Green Line (Line 5) and the Airport Express Line, are a part of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation's crowd control measures.

"The move is aimed at decongesting the evening peak hour passenger rush and also to encourage passengers to avail Metro services during off-peak hours," a metro spokesperson said.

As per the new operation plan, metro's busiest routes -- Blue Line (Line 3/4), connecting Dwarka to Noida and Yellow Line (Line 2), that connects Jahangirpuri to Gurgaon -- will be served by 12 new trains.

During off-peak hours, four additional trains will run on Blue line while the same stands at two for Yellow Line.

The number of trains inducted for running during evening peak hours are two and three for Yellow and Blue Line respectively. In addition to that, one train has been inducted on the Blue Line to run during morning peak hours.

After the additions, the number of trains running on these two routes will rise to 53 (Line 2) and 61 (Line 3) respectively with corresponding trips of 619 and 734.

While on Red Line (Line 1), a sole additional train will run during off peak hours, three trains will ply during the same hours on Violet Line (Line 6) with another one during the evening peak hours.

According to authorities, Delhi Metro has an estimated average ridership of 25 lakh per day.

From 2010 to 2014, DMRC has increased the number of coaches from 640 to 1076, an increase of almost 70 per cent across the network.

"In these years, all four coach trains on Line-2, 3 and 4 - the busiest lines of the Delhi Metro have been converted into 6 and 8 coaches and Line-1 have also got number of 6 coach trains to accommodate increased passengers," an official said.

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'Any land bill clause seen as anti-farmer will be dropped'

Written By kom nampultig on Sabtu, 28 Februari 2015 | 22.10

NEW DELHI: With the early enactment of the land acquisition bill looking uncertain, PM Narendra Modi on Friday reached out to opponents for support with the promise that his government was ready to drop any provision in the bill which was considered to be anti-farmer.

Modi also emphasized that passage of the land bill would be particularly beneficial for eastern UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam, Odisha, eastern Andhra Pradesh and the northeast - an assertion interpreted as a pitch aimed at regional parties like SP, JD(U), BJD, BSP, TRS and others who can help the government overcome its number handicap in Rajya Sabha.

However, even as the PM struck a conciliatory note and argued that parties should rise above partisan considerations to take a stand, he was not apologetic about seeking to discard the law enacted under the UPA government. He maintained that the existing law was flawed and needed to be changed.

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Consultative and counselling website finishproblems.com launched in Delhi

Consultative and counselling website, finishproblems.com, was launched on February 19 in Delhi.

"It is the first interactive website where one can seek advice or get counselling by chatting or talking directly to experts in specialized fields through telephonic calls," company reps tell us. The subjects of counselling include legal and corporate, astrology, love and relationships, tours and travel, electronics and automobiles, men, women and many more.

The founder and the managing director of the company, Puneet Rai, said, "The motive of the services is to provide expert advice to the people at `10minute in the most convenient manner anywhere, anytime. Anyone can purchase the membership through his/her debit card or credit or call and order cash on delivery coupons without any shipping charges, or visit our website http:www.finishproblems.com, or call 01244318686 for more assistance."

Sunil Sethi, president of FDCI, Dr Malvika Sabharwal, well-known gynaecologist, directors of the company Anjali Rai, Vaishali Rai, the director of the company , Manish Gupta, chairman, JIMS, Dr Seema Midha, tarot card reader, Nirmal Sinha, chairman and managing director at HHEC and body builder, Dr Som Tugnet, attended the event, and appreciated the concept of the website.

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My govt's only religion is India first, PM tells House

NEW DELHI: Faced with criticism that he was soft on Hindutva hardliners, PM Narendra Modi on Friday stressed that as the head of the government, he was obligated to ensure the primacy of the Constitution and rein in those making provocative communal statement.

"This country can only be run in accordance with the Constitution. It is the expression of the ethos the country has followed for thousands of years, and reflects hopes and aspirations of the common man. India cannot be governed by disregarding its tenets. No one can take law into his hands and nobody can discriminate against anyone on grounds of faith. Those making irresponsible statements should remember that being the head of the government, it is my responsibility to determine how it functions," Modi said.

Replying to a debate on the motion of thanks on the President's address in Lok Sabha, he reiterated, "I have repeatedly said my government has only one religion, India first. It treats the Constitution as its sole scripture. It worships only the cause of the welfare of all 1.25 billion citizens. "

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3 senior Cairns execs in leakgate probe

NEW DELHI: After a top Reliance Industries executive, three senior officials of energy major Cairn India, including one of its board members, are under investigation in the leakgate case involving theft of sensitive government information, sources said.

The sources named one of the three as Sudhir Mathur, the CFO of Cairn, and said another was a high ranking executive with the company's Rajasthan asset. Cops have seized the computers of these officials during raids. The action follows the interrogation of K K Naik, Cairn's arrested general manager.

Meanwhile, RIL's arrested manager Shailesh Saxena has allegedly named the company's president (corporate affairs) Shankar Adawal as the receiver of the leaked papers.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Reliance Industries,Rajasthan asset,CFO of Cairn,Cairn India

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Budget 2015: Delhi Metro gets 22 per cent hike

NEW DELHI: The allocation of funds for Delhi Metro in the Union Budget has seen a 22 per cent jump with it being alloted over Rs 4,200 crore as its network extends deeper into the National Capital Region.

A total of Rs 4,259 crore has been allocated to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, a joint venture of the Central and the state governments. It is an increase of 788 crore from the last year's Rs 3,470 crore.

DMRC officials termed the amount provided in the Budget as "adequate" for its ongoing projects including the Phase - III construction.

"As the project progresses during the year it would be possible for DMRC to approach the Government for more funds in the form of Revised Estimates and supplementaries as required from time to time," an official said.

Of the total amount, Metro got Rs 1007 crore for phase-III construction work as part of the Centre's equity with another Rs 125 crore for its expansion plans in the NCR region.

Under the subordinate debt category for Phase III that includes exemption given to it under Central taxes and land acquisition, it has been allocated Rs 530 crore.

On completion, the phase-III of the Delhi Metro will add 140 km to the existing operational network stretching over 190 km with newer operational corridors at various outer Delhi areas and also in places like Faridabad.

Around Rs 42,000 crore has been sanctioned for phase-III construction, a substantial part of which is being funded by the Japanese government.

This amount has been pegged at Rs 2,597 crore this time under the "pass through assistance" head in the Budget.

Both the Union and the state government hold 14 per cent equity in the project each.

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